Poetic Time

New for 2015.  On this page you'll find a selection of poems and other prose fragments, some my own some from others, with time as an important thematic element. I hope that they inspire you to explore the power of poetry.

In Remembrance:  Strands

The following  are my own selections of phrase fragments with a time poetic essence from the poetry of Mark Strand who died in November 2014.  They are drawn from his various published poems, collectively published in Blizzard of One: Poems (Alfred A. Knopf, 2000). I began seriously exploring Strand after reading a tribute to him in the New York Review of Books, January 8, 2015.

I was delighted to learn that the Academy of American Poets had introduced its 2015 National Poetry Month Poster featuring a line of poetry by Mark Strand from his poem, Easting Poetry. This year’s poster was designed by 2014 National Book Award finalist and New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast.


 "A snow flake, a blizzard of one, weightless, entered your room
And made its way to the arm of the chair where you looking up
From your book, saw it the moment it landed. That's all
There was to it." 
A Piece of the Storm (For Sharon Horvath).

"The lavender turns to ash."   

" The winter sun had turned the elms and houses yellow." 
I Will Love the Twenty-First Century.

"Nobody sees it happening, but the architecture of our time is becoming the architecture of next time."
The Next Time.

"What we desire more than season or weather, 
is the comfort
Of being strangers, at least to ourselves."
The Night, The Porch.


Facing Time

Facing time defines the moment; the wrist merely the stage.

Dials, cases, crowns, lugs and bands all dance for me.

My downward glance defines the present, now engaging me.

And the facings of times ahead of me, yet to be.

© Maryhelen Raciti-Jones, January 2015


In Full Revolt

Again the crimson clouds turned dawn to morning—

but I ignore my ringing clock.

I feel the shower on my neck and shoulders,

although I am still nestled in my bed.

Again, I am in full revolt and plan

to sleep away the day;

but then through cross-woven lashes, I see

my shoes leaving for work without me.

© James J. Raciti Used by permission of the author.

This poem appears in James J. Raciti's latest collection of poetry,  The Bird Chart Boy published by Sunstone Press in March 2014.


August Serenity

It's the very end of August 2015, and I've just finished reading Alexander McCall Smith's The Novel Habits of Happiness.  This is the the tenth book in the Isabel Dalhousie series.  However, it's the first one I've read and I thoroughly enjoyed its descriptive Scottish passages.  One of my favorites from it is:
“This was the North Sea, cold, blue, lapping at the jagged edge of the country, a reminder of where Scotland lay in the true nature of things; a place that was mostly water and wind and high empty sky; a place where the land itself seemed to be an afterthought, a farewell gesture from Europe.”


Blogging to Nowhere ( with apologies to Walter Benjamin)

Blogging to Nowhere 
Like jogging to Nowhere.

One post, then another.
Shop-keeps in time, each with its own wrist wears.
Housed along an Archive Arcade.

Page views mean an audience.
Nowhere to be seen.
Not speaking,
Not commenting.

Who are they?
How do they find me?
What do they find, when they find me?
As I pass by them.

I research.
Then write. 
Then post.
Then move on and do the same.

Does my content take them to a pause, a smile, a return to another page?

I can only keep blogging, jogging along my self-defined time transgressing, path.
Following Nowhere ... To Somewhere. 

And then finding as I turnaround, a multitude of faces reading over my shoulder.

                                                                      © Maryhelen Raciti-Jones, October 2015


As a companion to my posting, Sight to Last a Lifetime ,  October 9, 2015, it occurred to me that my readers might be interested to know that John Milton had to deal with blindness and railed against the limitations of the eye in his poem, Samson Agonistes (lines 93-97):

... why was the sight
To such a tender ball as the eye confined,
So obvious and so easy to be quenched,
And not, as feeling, through all parts diffused,
That she might look at will through every pore?


A Lifetime of Years

As though we had a lifetime of years before us,
we still adhere to old habits of treating our days like

some inexhaustible commodity, renewed forever with

each rising sun.
As though we had a lifetime of years before us,
we allow the plastic chips to fall through our fingers
like some inebriated horse-racing jockey bent on spending
his winnings in a single night of pleasure.
When we gather now, we forget the child or young man
existed within the octogenarians smiling at us with new
teeth and vacant eyes.
We no longer hear that clever bon mot in a flippant phrase,
or remember the lyrics of songs we sang lustily at closing hour
of the bar, spitting and spraying beer with each bilabial fricative.
                                 © James J. Raciti. Used by permission of the author.



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